Listen to my conversation with Yogesh Gupta, CEO of enterprise web content management company Fatwire.
In this podcast, find out how businesses are using social media to make their websites more engaging and interactive, and learn the importance of having the right business processes within your organization to make a success of a social networking strategy.
Listen to or download the 8:31 minute podcast below:
PW: I was looking forward to having this conversation, because Fatwire’s got a really established background in web content management — and that’s something that used to be a very static affair in the Web 1.0 days. But recently, particularly with the rise of social networking, I think it’s been changing a lot hasn’t it?
YG: It definitely has. You know, Phil, it’s an interesting world that we live in. The web was extremely static. And then in fact, as businesses and organizations started to see ways to make it more interactive, it became more dynamic. And now with the social media, and then social web, the interactivity and therefore the dynamics continues to increase and continues to accelerate. And I think it’s a really exciting time.
Initially, there was a very simple type of dynamic web stuff that people were beginning to do. For example, retailers do things like, ask customers to provide reviews and comments back on the products that they had and so on. But today, with the advent of social networks and social media, it actually is becoming that much more interesting and exciting. And I think businesses that otherwise wouldn’t have thought that they would want to make their sites dynamic, are making their sites dynamic.
I think you’re absolutely right that significant thought has to go into figuring out, what is it that one is trying to accomplish, before one starts using any technology or any capability. We’re finding that businesses who truly want to engage, for example, with their customers and prospects — and in that scenario, the interactivity is around enabling those individuals to provide feedback, ask questions. But then, it isn’t just the website that ends up changing, right? You need to then have people within your organization that then respond to those comments, and then respond to those questions, and actually interact with those folks.
So there’s a whole lot more to leveraging and creating engaging website than it is just the technology. But on the technology side, some of the things we are seeing that are being extensively used — and more increasingly used — are things like targeted content based on figuring out what the interest of the individual might be. I’ll give you a couple of very simple examples. We have a customer called Telenor, which is a large internet service provider in Denmark. And basically, when people go onto their site, based on the fact that whether or not they’re already their customer or not, and whether or not they have shown interest in certain products and services, they offer them other products and services, and so on.
Now you can say, well, that’s relatively simple from a conceptual perspective. But from a technology perspective, that is hard to do, unless you have the right tools that allow the business users to do it. And so in that scenario, their sales people go in and they say, ‘You know what, for this category of customers, or for these categories of visitors, we would like to offer them these products’ — and they do it without IT ever knowing about it. They create content, they create those rules that provide definitions of visitor categories or segments, and then target content for them. I think that’s the kind of activity that we’re beginning to see happen across industries.
And of course this is why a specialized platform has got all of this built into it — it’s so important isn’t it? Because you’re talking about really building complexity into the website — but then presenting it in a way that the business users can actually take advantage of the sophisticated capabilities — in order to engage their customers, and set up the processes and the responses, and adjust the content on a day-to-day basis — without actually having to go back to the programmers and ask them to do something.
That’s exactly right. You’re absolutely correct, Phil. And quite often, what we find is that many businesses and organizations will start down the path of doing additional capabilities on their websites without having the right platform. Because initially, people crawl before they walk, walk before they run. And as they start doing those, they start realizing that the amount of time and effort that is taking place just to do some relatively simple changes keeps increasing and keeps getting more complex and so on.
That actually is one of the driving reasons why prospects come to a company like Fatwire and say, ‘Hey guys; we have tried to do this. We really are finding that it’s hard for us to keep up with this. We don’t really need to have developers and programmers to help us do some relatively straightforward things; and would your platform help solve some of those problems for us?’